"Now, sir, what do you want?", Chapter XLVII of Dickens's Old Curiosity Shop by Thomas Worth in the first Household Edition volume published by Harper & Bros., New York (1872), 149: 4 ⅛ x 5 ½ inches (10.5 x 13.5 cm) framed. [Click on the image to enlarge it.]

Context of the Illustration: The Single Gentleman and Mrs. Nubbles arrive by coach

"The world has gone mad, I think," said the single gentleman, pressing through the concourse with his supposed bride. ‘Stand back here, will you, and let me knock."

Anything that makes a noise is satisfactory to a crowd. A score of dirty hands were raised directly to knock for him, and seldom has a knocker of equal powers been made to produce more deafening sounds than this particular engine on the occasion in question. Having rendered these voluntary services, the throng modestly retired a little, preferring that the single gentleman should bear their consequences alone.

"Now, sir, what do you want!" said a man with a large white bow at his button-hole, opening the door, and confronting him with a very stoical aspect.

"Who has been married here, my friend?" said the single gentleman.

"I have."

"You! and to whom in the devil’s name?"

"What right have you to ask?" returned the bridegroom, eyeing him from top to toe.

"What right!" cried the single gentleman, drawing the arm of Kit’s mother more tightly through his own, for that good woman evidently had it in contemplation to run away. "A right you little dream of. Mind, good people, if this fellow has been marrying a minor — tut, tut, that can’t be. Where is the child you have here, my good fellow. You call her Nell. Where is she?" [Chapter XLVII, 148]

Related Material about The Old Curiosity Shop

Scanned image and text by Philip V. Allingham. [You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the person who scanned the image and (2) link your document to this URL in a web document or cite the Victorian Web in a print one.]


Dickens, Charles. The Old Curiosity Shop. Illustrated by Thomas Worth. The Household Edition. 16 vols. New York: Harper & Bros., 1872. I.

Created 25 August 2020

Last modified 26 November 2020